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Incredible India

Hey all!

Sorry, again, that it has taken me so long to post another write up on this blog :(.

Since I've parted ways with the Nepali kids I have bummed around in Goa on the beaches for several weeks with one week in Hampi exploring the old architecture of a lost Hindu empire. Hampi also turns out to be Mecca for rock climbers with it's landscape of boulders and and rock cliffs. I ended up getting food poisoning in Hampi, the first experience with food poisoning since the start of my trip. It wasn't fun :(...but I survived. Spending time on the beaches of Goa was something that I wish I didn't have to leave. The people, food, parties and scenery were brilliant and I could have ended up stuck there if I would have allowed myself to do so. Riding scooters around the countryside was phenomenal and I think I may have come up with a new activity for when I return home: motorcycles!

I'm in Mumbai presently. I arrived several days ago by train without a hitch except for having to spend the first night in the train station because we arrived late and there were no available hotel rooms within my budget. After waking up the following morning I was able to find a bed in the dorms at the Salvation Army Guest House. Decent accommodation for cheap and great for meeting other backpackers. I'm staying in the Colaba district of Mumbai or in other words the tourist area. I didn't realize it at first but after a walk around I figured out that my guest house is situated directly across the street from the Taj Mahal Palace, the hotel that was bombed in 2008. Sorry Mom...I promise it is safe right now.

One of my favorite books that I have read while traveling in Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. It takes place mainly in Mumbai and I have been able to visit the places that I read about in that book such as Leopold Cafe, where there are still bullet holes in the windows from the shootings that have taken place back in the days of the mafia.

I've been able to hook up with friends that I've met along my travels here in Mumbai. Two guys that I met in Kathmandu, Saket and Shaym who live in Mumbai, have been awesome and have taken us around the last couple of days. A friend from Germany that I met in Xiamen, China back in October is in Mumbai and we've been touring Mumbai together as well.

We celebrated my birthday last night by going out for a night of clubbing! Saket and Shaym showed me the Mumbai nightlife and it definitely exceeded my expectations!

I leave Mumbai on Tuesday to go northwards to the Indian state of Rajasthan. I'm not sure how long it will take to experience Rajasthan but If I like it then maybe I will be in Rajasthan the remainder of my time in Inidia.

I just booked my ticket home for May 1 out of Delhi and will arrive in Omaha on May 2! The time is dwindling here in Asia and I still have so much that I want to see. But I have to keep telling myself that India will always remain and I can come back as often as I would like. Maybe buy an old Royal Enfield and cruise around the country for a year?

I hope everything back home is going well with everyone at the moment and that the weather isn't too cold.

Talk to you all later!

Posted by benji2020 21:41 Archived in India

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Good to read your update, Ben. Sounds like you are making the most of your visit - you've seen a lot and been to so many places!
Saw your family last Friday - we met at the bowling alley and watched Creighton win the first game in their tourney (but they lost the next day). Libby seems excited about VCU - what a great opportunity for her.
Have fun, happy belated birthday, and we'll see you in May!!

by Sue Bunjer

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